New drivers could be BANNED from driving at night for two years under proposals

New drivers could be BANNED from driving at night for two years under proposals

The Government is considering launching a ‘Graduate Driving Licence’ for young motorists which could restrict them until they pass a probation period

Young motorists could be banned from driving at night for two years after they pass their test under new proposals.

The Government is considering a bringing in a ‘Graduated Driving Licence’ which could restrict motorists under 24 after they earn their licence.

Prime Minister Theresa May has hinted restrictions will last for a two-year probationary period, in a bid to reduce road deaths, The Mirror reports.

Figures show drivers aged between 17 and 24 are involved in a quarter of crashes which lead to deaths or serious injury.

Similar schemes in Australia, New Zealand and the US ban new motorists from driving at night or carrying passengers unless they have supervision from an experienced driver.

New drivers could also be restricted from driving cars with larger engines, while they could be forced to take a second test at the end of their probationary period.

The Prime Minister said: “There are too many people who suffer a loss and tragedy at the hands of learner drivers and we will look at that.”

Simon McCulloch at comparethemarket.com added it could also lead to a reduction in car insurance costs – particularity for young drivers who are spending 10% of their salary on just motor cover.

“The idea behind these new plans is clear, and these measures should result in safer roads for all. While it may initially feel like a harsh restriction for new drivers, it’s worth considering that these limitations on their licenses should reduce their insurance risk profiles, which could ultimately see the cost of their insurance reduce significantly,” Simon said.

Young drivers are involved in a quarter of fatal or serious road crashes (Image: PA)
“Young drivers already face much higher costs just to get on the road, with our research indicating that 17-24 year old’s pay, on average, a staggering £2,379 a year to run a car.

“The largest contributor to that figure is insurance, which costs on average £1,354. Reducing the risk, and therefore the premiums, could go a long way to making driving more affordable for many young people,” he added.

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Under current rules, it takes just six points for a newly-qualified driver to lose their licence, compared to nine points for everyone else.

Since April, any new driver caught using their phone at the wheel faces an instant ban, as the offence carries a six point penalty.

In 2017, the Government introduced major changes to the driving test to make it more “real-world”. That includes using sat-navs, while there are plans to introduce motorway driving training.

Joshua Harris, at road safety charity Brake, said: “Ensuring that novice drivers have the skills and experience to drive safely on all types of roads, and in all scenarios, is an urgent priority.

“We are encouraged that the Government will look into the issue of Graduated Driver Licensing, however, this process must result in positive change.

“Young and novice drivers are involved in a disproportionate number of road crashes and the introduction of a comprehensive Graduated Driver Licensing system is critical to reverse this trend.

“Brake is calling upon the Government to bring the UK’s licensing system in line with best practice worldwide, requiring a minimum of 10 hours professional tuition for learner drivers and introducing a novice license, with restrictions in place for two years after passing the practical driving test.”